How is it that this song has only 275 views?? Here is the voice of an angel. Translation to come soon.

To All My Friends

To all my friends, whether you side with the Zionists, Muslims, or moderates. Please listen to this song:

Legislative Buffoonery

This excerpt from a Time article about proposed legislation re: church and state:

The North Carolina bill—which appears to be dead for now—was one of two big church-state blow-ups last week. In Tennessee, legislators withdrew a school voucher bill that would have allowed parents to direct taxpayer money to private schools, including Christian academies. The reason they balked: it suddenly occurred to them that the bill would also allow parents to direct tax dollars to Islamic schools.


Protecting Al-Assad

This is exactly what I was talking about in my last post. If the United States is not going to move against the thug President of Syria Bashar Al-Assad due to his crimes against humanity (and I understand the arguments against US involvement) there should at least be a legal means for US citizens to volunteer for that fight. Apparently the only way a US citizen can join the fight is to join a rebel group that is linked to Al-Qaeda because Al-Qaeda seems to be the only organization around that is actively assisting in the fight against this very bad guy. Now don’t misunderstand my argument. I’m not saying that fighting Al-Assad suddenly makes Al-Qaeda the good guy. My question is why we are punishing a US citizen for firing an RPG at the Syrian regime? As long as he wasn’t conspiring against US targets (and it’s my understanding that he isn’t being accused of that), I think this is a crime that should not be prosecuted. Doing so makes it appear that the United States government is protecting Bashaar Al-Asaad and that’s worse than doing nothing at all.

Legal Mercenaries

May you die and burn in hell Bashar al-Assad for your war on Muslims and victims like these. Who needs a Zionist conspiracy when you have Arab leaders such as this who kill so many of their very own? I wish the United States would sanction the use of volunteer American mercenaries to put boots on the ground and help bring this monster to an end, in the spirit of the Flying Tigers who helped defend mainland China in World War II. A legal option is something that should be allowed. Al-Assad’s continued existence is of no use to anyone.

Rote and Wrote

When I was in the third grade my family moved from Lansing Michigan to San Angelo Texas for a short period of time. The change in school systems was shocking to me. Whereas in Lansing we had classes that separated students according to reading ability enabling the more gifted students the opportunity to be challenged with material that was at their level, at Rio Vista Elementary all the students were lumped in together to study at a level that was appropriate to the many students who were below average reading level because they were learning English as a second language. We also were forced each school day to recite the names of all 50 states in alphabetical order. Welcome to the world of learning by rote.

Studies have shown that, unless used on a normal basis, this type of learning is largely forgotten a few months after the repetition is no longer required. Knowing the names of the United States in alphabetical order is something that never comes up in real life, not even on Jeapardy. I would wager that not a single student from my class can now recite the first 15 states in a row. If this is true, then the net gain of the efforts to teach us the names of the states is likely zero.

Imagine my surprise then, when I read this article where an Ohio educator named Suzanne Kail describes eyerolling when told she would be required to teach her children Latin and Greek word roots as well as cursive writing, which she regarded as rote memorization. Yes, it is rote memorization, but involving something that is actually useful in the same fashion as memorizing the multiplication tables. Word roots and math are something that you will use your entire life so the benefits of these should be self-evident. The articles goes on to describe how Suzanne’s students soon were competing to produce lists of English words with Latin and Greek roots and how many of them benefitted by later being able to identify words with these roots on the SATs.

The requirement of learning cursive writing, however, is of a bit more dubious value. My ability to read and write in cursive is presently about as useful as correct-o-type (don’t even bother googling it because there aren’t any pictures). In fact, in studying Arabic I’ve become semi-proficient with the Arabic keyboard yet I still struggle with writing it because most of the work I do with it is on the keyboard. At minimum I must train myself to write Arabic legibly and correctly as the forms of the letters change depending on their placement in words.

The upshot of my studies is that in the process I’m learning the roots and pluralization of Semitic words which augments my knowledge base even of some English words which have been borrowed from those languages. The knowledge of these words is something I accomplish largely by rote which is something useful to me in this case so I ain’t mad at it.

A curious aside: in describing her initial objection to teaching Latin and Greek word roots as “the antithesis” of what she believed in most, one could respond:

anti: Origin:
Middle English < Latin < Greek, prefixal use of antí; akin to Sanskrit ánti opposite, Latin ante, Middle Dutch ende (> Dutch en and), English an- in answer. Compare ante-, and

thesis: Origin:
Middle English < Latin < Greek, prefixal use of antí; akin to Sanskrit ánti opposite, Latin ante, Middle Dutch ende (source, dictionary.com)

Horde Rogue Elected to Maine State Senate

Political affiliation aside, this story is cool. Colleen Lachowicz was running for public office when her political opponents made a campaign issue about the fact that she plays World of Warcraft. The strategy backfired as she quickly became the most famous Maine resident since that St. Bernard that was eating people so Maine now has an assasination rogue representing Maine for the Horde. Nice.

Arabic Translation Toyor al Janah Iqra Nasheed

I have attempted a translation of Toyor Al Janah’s song “Iqra” on youtube. The purpose of this has been twofold, both to help familiarize myself with Arabic sentence structure (verb conjugation, pronouns, etc) and to give me practice typing in Arabic. Since most of the words in this nasheed are new to me I’ve had to rely on google translator. The result is awkward language. If any Arabic speaking person cares to visit the site and help me to fix this translation, that would be great!

Mental Image

I just read a breaking news headline that said “Government suing Bank of America alleging fraud against Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac” and this is the image that immediately came to mind.

Arabic Nasheed

If I ever become a boxer I’m going to have them play this song by Raghuda Al Wazzan (رغودة الوزان) with Toyor al Jannah (طويور الجنة) when I walk into the ring. In studying Arabic from home, I’ve started from the ground up which means I started with books and videos on the Arabic alphabet, basic verbs, and now I’m up to children’s level language. I need help from someone who speaks and writes Arabic because there are some parts of this song I’m either not hearing correctly or which may in fact be regional dialect or slang. I don’t actually need a translation (as I can do this myself) or transliteration (unnecessary because I can read and write Arabic), I simply need the lyrics typed out in Arabic script. Any help I can get in this regard would be greatly appreciated and I would be eternally grateful.